COVID-19 Resources & Recovery

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Overview

Many Harris County residents need help and advice dealing with COVID-19. Our local, state, and federal partners have programs in place to provide assistance with basic needs including housing, food, and healthcare. This is only a partial list of what may be available.

The best way to start any search for help is by dialing 2-1-1 or by searching their online database at 211texas.org. The experts there can help link you to the programs that meet your needs and answer questions about resources available.

The Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act provides supplements to unemployment insurance as well as direct payments to families. Details of some of these programs are not yet available and updates will be provided as soon as possible. Other benefits under the CARES Act are paid out through existing state programs such as SNAP and WIC.

Resource lists are updated as needed.

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Help for Families

COVID-19 Hotel Isolation Program

If you have tested positive for COVID-19 or think you might have COVID-19 symptoms, it is very important that you do not come in close contact with others, including people you may live with. This is called "self-isolation.” The COVID-19 Hotel Program (sponsored via partnership between City of Houston, Harris County, and others) is available for anyone awaiting COVID-19 test results, exposed to COVID-19, or positive for COVID-19 and are unable to safely quarantine or self-isolate.

If you are currently at your home and think you may have COVID-19, but cannot self-isolate, you can call:

Houston Health Department: 832-393-5080 (for those within the City of Houston)
Harris County Public Health: 832-927-7575

American Red Cross Virtual Family Assistance Center

Click here or call 833-492-0094 for resources to help deal with the loss of a loved one from COVID-19.

Behavioral Health Resources

COVID-19 Behavioral Health Line: (833) 251-7544

Childcare

For information on childcare options in Houston and the Gulf Coast region, please visit www.findchildcarenow.org.

Domestic Violence

National Domestic Violence Hotline: (800) 799-7233, (800) 787-3224 (TTY), or text LOVEIS to 22522

Economic Impact Payments

Information on receiving Economic Impact Payments from the U.S. Internal Revenue Service

Eviction Assistance

Texas Legal Services Center has been working on the Eviction Answer Toolkit with Texas Rio Grande Legal Aid and Legal Aid of Northwest Texas. It is now live on the TexasLawHelp website.
This is a tool for self-represented litigants to use to contest an eviction.

Toolkit Description: If you get a Notice to Vacate, it's easy to file an Answer with the Justice Court. Filing an Answer lets you tell the judge in writing why you should not be evicted, requires the judge to look at the evidence before making a decision, and is required if you want to appeal the decision to County Court. Our Eviction Answer Toolkit has forms and instructions to help you.

The following documents are resources for tenants seeking eviction assistance:
Know Your Rights
Tenant Request for CARE Act

Mortgage Assistance

Texas Rio Grande Legal Aid developed the tools and information below to help homeowners trying to navigate the options available if they fall behind on a mortgage loan due to a COVID-19 related hardship. It is primarily designed for low-income Texas homeowners with an institutional loan (i.e. not owner-financed, wraparound, etc.):

Food Resources

Apply for SNAP Food Benefits: https://yourtexasbenefits.hhsc.texas.gov/programs/snap or call 2-1-1, option 2 

Find Student Meals: Texas Education Agency https://schoolmealfinder.hoonuit.com/?filter_state=tx

Healthcare and COVID-19 Testing

Harris County is partnering with the Federal government to provide COVID-19 testing to those experiencing symptoms or who may have been exposed to the virus. If this applies to you, please begin the process using the COVID-19: Self-Assessment Tool / (832) 927-7575 (technical access needs).

Helping Others – Volunteering

Volunteer Houston has activated their Virtual Volunteer Reception Center to help connect those with a giving spirit with agencies in need of volunteers during COVID-19.

Price Gouging and Scams

Report Local Price Gouging: https://www.harriscountycao.org/coronavirus-consumer-complaints

Report Price Gouging and Scams: Texas Attorney General, (800) 621-0508

Student Loan Assistance

Suicide Prevention

If you are having thoughts of suicide, talk to someone who cares. Dial the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline: (800) 273-8255 (TALK)

Unemployment

Utility Assistance

For financial assistance with utilities, please contact 2-1-1 or go to 211texas.org for available resources in your area.

Workplace Safety

COVID-19 Work Safe Program from the Greater Houston Partnership: https://www.houston.org/worksafe

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Help for Businesses

Request Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) Assistance

Click here to request personal protective equipment (touchless thermometers, face masks and gloves) to help protect employees. All commercial and nonprofit entities in Harris County providing goods or services directly to the public are eligible to register.

Small Business Administration

The U.S. Small Business Administration has multiple programs to assist business owners and their employees weather the economic storm caused by COVID-19 SBA’s Economic Injury Disaster Loans offer up to $2 million in assistance and can provide vital economic support to small businesses to help overcome the temporary loss of revenue they are experiencing. In addition, the Paycheck Protection Program offers loans to help business retain their employees.

The SBA Houston Office has resources and programs tailored for local business owners. Go to https://www.sba.gov/offices/district/tx/houston for more information.

SBA COVID-19 Small Business Guidance: https://www.sba.gov/page/coronavirus-covid-19-small-business-guidance-loan-resources

SBA Economic Injury Disaster Loans: https://disasterloan.sba.gov/ela/

SBA Paycheck Protection Program: https://www.sba.gov/funding-programs/loans/coronavirus-relief-options/paycheck-protection-program-ppp